As the Late Late Show is back on our screens very soon, it’s an exciting time for Ryan and his team at RTE. Throughout the entirety of the pandemic the show continued to keep us entertained every Friday night, constantly adapting to the changing restrictions as the weeks and months went on.
We caught up with the host to find out what some of the most difficult moments were and the highlights of the past year on the Late Late.
Although it was a difficult 15 months, because of the use of video calls it did mean the chat show got to speak to some interesting celebs that usually wouldn’t have appeared on air with Ryan.
For example over the past year Ryan chatted to the likes of Dolly Parton, Conan O’Brien and Jane Fonda over video call which he said were real highlights despite the fact that he would always prefer a face-to-face interview.
Going forward, in the autumn scheduling he shared that there will be less of these; ” unless if there’s something particularly special.”
One of the aspects of it all Ryan struggled with most was the lack of a live audience whilst he was on air. Although thousands of us tune in from home, he is also used to having a few hundred people in the studio with him too!
Speaking about this he said; “The audience for me, is what the Big Yellow Taxi is to Joni Mitchell. I didn’t realise what I had, til it was gone. I missed them so much and I can’t wait for them to come back because they are part and parcel of the fabric of the program.”
Continuing he added; “And for all those shows that I did, 49 shows in a row, talking to no audience at all, it was very very peculiar place to be, very challenging and very hard.”
Speaking about some of his favourite moments from the past year on the air he shared that it was difficult to narrow it down as; “I found myself at various times getting terribly emotional, trying to keep it together sometimes when you see some of the stories.”
In particular he shared that when the ambulance service came in around the beginning of the pandemic was memorable; I’m showing us what what the PPE would look like and I remember thinking how how weird it was and how unexpected and how dystopian it was, and that those people then went on to become the front line.”
“I found that very, very moving and what they did very moving and then the next thing you know you’re looking at Bono and The Edge singing the songs for The Simon Community and your heart breaks again because you’re in a small studio with no audience and two of the biggest stars in the world are singing the song to raise another million quid for homeless people.”
“I could be here all day talking about beautiful moments because there were so many beautiful moments brought to us by people that no one had ever heard of.”
The new season of The Late Late Show starts Friday September 3rd on RTE 1.